Vincent Calcagno - Institut Sophia Agrobiotech (UCA-CNRS-INRA) - Keywords: game theory, evolutionary stable strategies, dynamic stability, speciation, co-evolutionary races, ODEs

Vincent Calcagno - Institut Sophia Agrobiotech (UCA-CNRS-INRA) - Keywords: game theory, evolutionary stable strategies, dynamic stability, speciation, co-evolutionary races, ODEs

Contribution title: Complexity and the stability of ecological systems

Natural ecosystems are complex assemblages composed of many species, each interacting together both directly and indirectly, through their environment. The coupled population and evolutionary dynamics of such systems can yield a wide range of behaviors, and a question of general interest is to understand how complex ecosystems can be stable, and when complexity promotes, or on the contrary hinders, stability. I will briefly review what ecological theory can tell about the dynamics and stability of complex ecosystems, starting with Robert May's paradox of diversity, and then introduce recent results regarding the evolutionary dynamics of complex ecosystems. I will suggest some general trends in the consequences of ecological complexity on the evolutionary stability of ecological assemblages.